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Maldives welcomes first visitor of 2019



Maldives has welcomed its first tourist visitor of the year.

The celebrated guest is Khalid Kareem of Saudi Arabia, who is visiting the Maldives with his family to celebrate the New Year and the couple’s wedding anniversary at Bandos Maldives resort. They were positively thrilled to find out that they were the first visitors.

“We feel extremely honoured. This is the second time we are visiting the Maldives. First was in 2014. And the most amazing experience [of visiting the Maldives] is, the warmth of Maldivians. They are always smiling. It makes you feel so comfortable, like you are home,” the couple said excitedly.

Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) and Maldives Airports Company Limited (MACL) organised the celebration as a welcome tea at the VIP Lounge of Velana International Airport. MMPRC staff escorted the visitors to the VIP lounge where they were welcomed by tourism minister Ali Waheed and MMPRC Managing Director Thoyyib Mohamed along with senior officials of MMPRC, MACL, tourism ministry, Maldives Immigration and Maldives Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (MATATO).

Tourism minister Waheed presented Khalid with a special gift symbolising the good will of Maldivians, while MMPRC Managing Director Thoyyib presented an executive gift package from MMPRC. Gifts on behalf of MACL were presented by the Acting Managing Director of MACL Moosa Solih. The visitor was also awarded a seven-day free holiday voucher by AaaVeee Nature’s Paradise resort and return air tickets to Maldives by Oman Air.

Saudi Arabia has been a rapidly growing market to Maldives over the recent months.

Arrivals from Saudi Arabia show a positive growth of 16 per cent from January to November when compared to the same period in 2017. Saudi Arabia also remains the top country from the Middle East market in terms of arrivals. With the first visitor being a Saudi Arabian, this is a great opportunity to promote the destination in the Middle Eastern market.

Every year, local travel and tourism industry businesses collaborate with MMPRC, the corporation mandated with the promotion of Maldives as a tourist destination, to celebrate the first visitor as well as other milestone arrivals such as the 500k, 750k and the one millionth visitor.

A total of 1,333,456 tourists arrived to Maldives from January to November 2018. It is a seven per cent growth compared to the same period of 2017.


Maldives celebrates arrival of 2024’s 1 millionth tourist



Maldives on Thursday welcomed the one millionth tourist to visit this year.

The one millionth tourist is a Thai named Sutapa Amonwivat, who arrived from Singapore with her husband and two children. This is her second visit to Maldives.

Maldives Marketing and Public Relations Corporation (MMPRC) and the Ministry of Tourism gave a warm welcome to Sutapa at the Velana International Airport (VIA) Thursday afternoon. She was welcomed at the VIA by tourism minister Ibrahim Faisal, MMPRC Managing Director Ibrahim Shiury and senior officials of various relevant agencies.

After welcoming her with traditional offerings, she was presented with various gifts by the ministry, MMPRC, customs, immigration, Maldives Association of Travel Agents and Tour Operators (MATATO) and Trans Maldivian Airways (TMA).

Maldives reached one million tourists in June, three weeks earlier than last year. The number of tourists reached one million on July 16, 2023.

Maldives expects to reach 2 million tourists this year.

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New air route connects Chongqing to Maldives



Chongqing Airlines on Monday began its inaugural flights to Maldives.

The Chongqing-Male route, scheduled three times a week, is expected to strengthen the bonds between China and the Maldives, opening up exciting new opportunities for tourism and cultural exchange.

The inaugural flight was welcomed upon its arrival at Velana International Airport (VIA) in Maldives, where local officials and tourism representatives expressed their enthusiasm for this new development.

“We warmly welcome our friends from China to our beautiful islands. This new connection strengthens our bonds and opens up new opportunities for tourism,” the tourism ministry said on X.

Maldives currently welcomes four airlines from China, including China Eastern, Beijing Capital Airlines, Xiamen Airlines.

In January, Maldives government urged tourism stakeholders in both Maldives and China to ramp up efforts to restore China’s position as the primary source market for Maldives tourism, a status held before the onset of Covid-19.

China, being the largest source market for Maldives tourism before the pandemic, saw a resumption of tourist arrivals from January 2023 after a three-year hiatus due to the pandemic. In 2023, the Maldives welcomed 187,118 Chinese tourists, marking a significant recovery in numbers. This year, the Maldives has welcomed the most number of tourists from China, with over 107,940 or 11.5 percent of total arrivals by June 12. 

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CROSSROADS Maldives Introduces Weixin Pay at resorts for seamless guest experience



CROSSROADS Maldives has introduced WeChat Pay, widely known as Weixin Pay in China, across its world-class resorts, SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton, and Hard Rock Hotel Maldives. This payment option is made available to enhance the convenience and overall experience for guests from China, making their stay in the Maldives more enjoyable and hassle-free.

Understanding the needs of the diverse guests, CROSSROADS Maldives has integrated WeChat Pay into operations, allowing guests from China to easily and securely conduct transactions using a payment method familiar to them. The introduction of WeChat Pay is a testament to CROSSROADS Maldives’ dedication to enhancing guest satisfaction by offering exceptional experiences at every turn. What is also expected through this initiative is that the guests could benefit from better foreign exchange rates, translating to better savings on their expenditures during their stay.

The option is available for guests in-house conveniently at both resorts as well as across the Marina at CROSSROADS Maldives where a wider variety of unparalleled dining and retail experiences are available for all guests. The day visitors from China will also therefore equally benefit from this new introduction at the Maldives’ premier multi-island integrated leisure destination.

SAii Lagoon Maldives, Curio Collection by Hilton, is a vibrant tropical escape that offers unique and locally inspired experiences. The resort features spacious rooms and villas, a variety of dining options, and an array of recreational activities designed to cater to the desires of modern travellers. Guests can escape to the island’s SAiisational natural beauty, enjoy water sports, and indulge in spa treatments, all while relishing the personalised service that defines Hilton’s Curio Collection.

Hard Rock Hotel Maldives brings the iconic Hard Rock spirit to the tranquil shores of the Maldives. This family-friendly resort offers a perfect blend of relaxation and entertainment, featuring music-inspired experiences, live performances, and the brand’s signature amenities. With luxurious accommodations, diverse dining options, and a plethora of activities for all ages, Hard Rock Hotel Maldives ensures an unforgettable holiday experience for every guest.

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